Regional News of Thursday, 24 April 2014
The Ghana Registered Nurses Association (GRNA) has condemned the assault of a Community Health Nurse at the Kajelow Community Clinic, who refused to grant a patient’s request for more drugs.
The nurse, Ms. Rebecca Pokua, was assaulted by a male patient, one Wepia Lawrence, who demanded that the nurse gives him enough medicine at her facility in the Kassena-Nankana West District of the Upper East Region.
When the nurse declined and explained to him that at the clinic level, that was what she could prescribe for him and that, if he needed more drugs, he could go to the Health Centre at Paga, it did not go down well with the patient and he brutally assaulted the nurse.
A statement released to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) and signed by the Regional Chairman of the Association, Mr. Samuel Alagkora, warned that the Association will not accept such a misbehaviour towards any health worker.
The nurse who was admitted at the War Memorial Hospital for multiple injuries, had her neck twisted by the attacker, apparently to attempt to strangulate her.
Her eyes were also injured, leading to the temporal loss of her sight.
She has since been discharged, the statement indicated.
The assault of Ms. Pokua, the statement indicated, was not an isolated case, and that there were many instances where nurses have been attacked by patients and their relatives, at the least provocation.
The release said, “it is this kind of behaviour that is derailing the efforts of the Health Authorities and GRNA to persuade nurses to accept postings to rural areas.
The people of Kajelow must hold Mr. Wepia responsible if nurses refuse to accept postings to that Clinic.”
The GRNA said that it would not relent in its efforts to ensure that the perpetrator was brought to book, and commended the Police for arresting Mr. Wepia.
It impressed on the police to speed up investigations to ensure that the culprit was punished to deter others.
The Association entreated its members to remain calm and go about their duties, whilst measures were being taken to deal with the problem.
It lauded the Regional Directorate of the Ghana Health Service for the closure of the clinic.
“The Association wishes to inform the general public that the Ministry of Health and the Ghana Health Service have a standard treatment guideline and other treatment protocols, that are expected to be followed by every Health Professional.
The objectives for these protocols are to stop irrational drug prescriptions and symptomatic treatment.
According to the GRNA, diseases are cured through their causes and not their symptoms and signs.
Therefore, the number of drugs one would get is neither determined by a nurse or a patient, but by the condition.”